Casino hotel opening date delayed
Published 12:03 am Wednesday, October 21, 2015
NATCHEZ — After initially planning to only be closed for two days, the former Isle of Capri Casino Hotel will be closed until November before reopening as Magnolia Bluffs Hotel.
Magnolia Bluffs Casino President Kevin Preston said unforeseen repairs caused the company to make the decision to close for approximately two weeks.
The $11.5 million sale of the former Isle of Capri hotel to Magnolia Bluffs Casino’s parent company Casino Holding Investment Partners closed Monday. The Isle of Capri Casino Natchez closed its doors Sunday.
Email newsletter signup
The repairs causing the delay of the hotel reopening, Preston said, stem from plumbing and other issues.
The original plan was to close for a couple of days to switch over computer systems and reopen this week as a renovation of the hotel begins.
Preston said outside contractors will be coming in to take a look at plumbing and replace some toilets in rooms and make other repairs.
“We’re also looking at the food and beverage equipment; some of it has been down for a long time,” Preston said. “We want to make sure we have the necessary equipment to have a proper opening.”
The lobby and food and beverage areas will be first on the renovation list.
The company will then begin remodeling the hotel rooms, working one floor at a time so rooms will remain open throughout the process. The remodeling work should be completed in approximately four months, Preston said.
In the meantime, the carpets in the will be professionally cleaned until the rooms can be remodeled.
The painting of the exterior of the building should begin today. The large lighted Isle of Capri sign was taken down from the building Tuesday.
The approximately 20 former Isle of Capri hotel employees Magnolia Bluffs hired attended new-hire orientation Tuesday, Preston said.
The hiring of more hotel employees, Preston said, would depend on the hotel’s volume of business.
In addition to training the new hires, Preston said Magnolia Bluffs is focused on ensuring customers have the best possible experience, thus the need for more time to prepare for the hotel opening.
“We want to start off on the right foot with our customers, and obviously they have a level of expectation from Magnolia Bluffs, and we want to make sure that carries over,” he said.
The hotel is expected to open approximately at the beginning of November, Preston said.